Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs Cavalry FC
Location: ATCO Field
Date and Time: May 25th, 6:00 pm PST, 9:00 pm PST
Watching: OneSoccer (in Canada) & MLS Live on ESPN+ (in US)
I probably don’t have to preface much about this match. Most Whitecaps fans who have been keeping up with the team recently know the torrid history which the ‘Caps have had within the Voyageur’s Cup over the past few years. In the previous two instances, the Whitecaps were knocked out by CPL opposition twice, being the first Canadian MLS team to achieve this feat. Three years ago now, but it feels much more recent than that.
Luckily the Whitecaps seem to be picking up steam over the past number of matches and put on a good display against Valour in the previous round of the Canadian Championship. So far Sartini is perfect against CPL opposition but with how the brackets went, it’s looking to be a retribution match for the Whitecaps. The Whitecaps will have to go against the team that eliminated them in 2019 to get anywhere near the final. Some would call Vancouver’s path “easy” but as has been seen many times before, it usually doesn’t end that way.
Cavalry has home advantage, so already the Whitecaps have that against them. Not to mention, Cavalry are high flying in the league, only behind Pacific FC currently. The goals are shared amongst a handful of their players, but notably Joseph Mason and Ali Musse have three goals in the season, which is as much as Whitecaps top scorer Lucas Cavallini has to his name. Cavalry is joint top in goals scored by CPL teams, scoring one more than Pacific, so nullifying their attacking threat should be the ‘Caps’ first order of business. Luckily, the stringent defense shown by Cavalry three years ago isn’t quite the same as it used to be. Only Mason Trafford remains from the back line of 2019, and they are currently in the bottom half of goals against in the CPL. If key Whitecaps players can be on their game, this should be an straightforward game plan. That’s a big if- because Cavalry are undefeated at home, and they’ve already previously beaten Pacific FC, so stars seem to be aligning in the Calgarian team’s favour.
With recent performances of certain players, I’m feeling a little more secure in predicting a 2-0 Win for the Whitecaps, if anything at all to exorcise the CPL demons and give Sartini a litlle good faith from the fans in a period where he was starting to lose some.
Eighty Six Forever Staff Picks:
Sam: 3-1 VAN
Caleb: 2-1 CAV
Andrew: 2-1 VAN (a.e.t)
Ian: 2-0 VAN